Videophiled Cult: The Troma-tic ‘Return to Nuke ‘Em High’

Return to Nuke ‘Em High, Volume 1 (Troma, Blu-ray, DVD), the first feature directed by Troma founder and spokesman Lloyd Kaufman in almost a decade, revives the mutant high school series he launched in 1986. He builds this new chapter quite literally on the ruins of the previous films, with an organic food factory resting on the bulldozed remains of the old nuclear power plant. In the words of guest narrator Stan Lee, “What could go wrong?”

This being a Troma film, you get plenty of gratuitous sex, exposed boobs, radioactive waste, mutant creatures, melting bodies, spontaneous combustion, non-stop fart gags (you can’t get out of a scene without the soundtrack slipping into flatulence), rampant bullying and a student body without the common sense not to eat the glowing green tacos in the school cafeteria. Kaufman has always had an affection for nerds, misfits, and outcast heroes but his romantic heroes this time around are two girls in love and they are easily the most well-adjusted protagonists in his canon. Lauren (Catherine Corcoran), the dizzy rich girl with a runaway pet duck, and social activist blogger Chrissy (Asta Paredes) are opposites whose antagonism quickly heats up into lust, numerous topless scenes, and a mutant rampage that just seems like a bad dream to them.

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